Archive for the ‘Prayer’ Category

17 March ― 17 ‘Alá’   Leave a comment

17 March ― 17 ‘Alá’

The Holy Period of the Fast

Day 17


MORNING:

Praise be unto Thee, O my God! Thou art He Who by a word of His mouth hath revolutionized the entire creation, and by a stroke of His pen hath divided Thy servants one from another. I bear witness, O my God, that through a word spoken by Thee in this Revelation all created things were made to expire, and through yet another word all such as Thou didst wish were, by Thy grace and bounty, endued with new life.

I render Thee thanks, therefore, and extol Thee, in the name of all them that are dear to Thee, for that Thou hast caused them to be born again, by reason of the living waters which have flowed down out of the mouth of Thy will. Since Thou didst quicken them by Thy bounteousness, O my God, make them steadfastly inclined, through Thy graciousness, towards Thy will; and since Thou didst suffer them to enter into the Tabernacle of Thy Cause, grant by Thy grace that they may not be kept back from Thee.

—His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Bahá’í World Faith, p. 147

IMG_2462 

EVENING:

Praised be Thou, O Lord my God! I am Thy servant and the son of Thy servant. I have set my face towards Thy Cause, believing in Thy oneness, acknowledging Thy unity, recognizing Thy sovereignty and the power of Thy might, and confessing the greatness of Thy majesty and glory. I ask Thee, by Thy name through which the heaven was cleft asunder, and the earth was rent in twain, and the mountains were crushed, not to withhold from me the breezes of Thy mercy which have been wafted in Thy days, nor to suffer me to be far removed from the shores of Thy nearness and bounty.

I am he who is sore athirst, O my Lord! Give me to drink of the living waters of Thy grace. I am but a poor creature; reveal unto me the tokens of Thy riches. Doth it beseem Thee to cast out of the door of Thy grace and bounty such as have set their hopes on Thee, and can it befit Thy sovereignty to hinder them that yearn after Thee from attaining the adored sanctuary of Thy presence and from beholding Thy face? By Thy glory! Such is not my belief in Thee, for I am persuaded that Thou art the God of bounteousness, Whose grace hath encompassed all things.

I beseech Thee, O my Lord, by Thy mercy that hath surpassed the entire creation, and Thy generosity that hath embraced all created things, to cause me to turn my face wholly towards Thee, and to seek Thy shelter, and to be steadfast in my love for Thee. Write down, then, for me what Thou didst ordain for them who love Thee. Powerful art Thou to do what Thou pleasest. No God is there beside Thee, the Ever-Forgiving, the All-Bountiful.

Praised be God, the Lord of the worlds.

—His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Prayers and Meditations by Bahá’u’lláh, pp: 24-25

FROM THE CENTRE OF THE COVENANT ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ:

Verily I beseech God, with all humbleness, to remove the covering from thine insight and to show unto thee His great signs, and to make thee a banner of guidance, severed from all else save Him, enkindled with the fire of His love, engaged in His praise and apprehending the realities of things; so that thou mayest see with thine eyes, hear with thine ears and not imitate any of the fathers and ancestors; have perception in the matter of thy Lord, for the people are in dark veils. By God, the True One, verily the doors of the everlasting paradise are opened before the faces of the devoted ones and the Tree of Life therein overshadows the spiritual ones. Happy are those who enter it and are sheltered under its shadow!

O thou candle shining by the light of the Love of God!

That which thou hast inscribed and conceived of in thy mind was manifest and clear. The contents indicate spiritual signs and the meanings were like unto a sweet chalice. I trust in God that thy pure mind may become reflective of light; thus thou mayest become prepared for the divine manifestation and attract the light of guidance from the Heavenly Star.

O servant of God! Through the power of God’s love the weak become mighty, the poor become rich, the little bird becomes a great eagle soaring on the ethereal wave, the tiny plant grows into a great palm tree.

Tablets of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá v1, pp: 63-64

From Mahatma Gandhi [1869 – 1948]

Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it.

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6 March ― 6 ‘Alá’   Leave a comment

6 March ― 6 ‘Alá’

The Holy Period of the Fast

Day 6

IMG_0230

 

MORNING:

As for obligatory prayer, it hath been sent down by the Pen of the Most High in such wise that it setteth ablaze the hearts and captivateth the souls and minds of men.

—His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting,

FROM THE WRITINGS OF BAHÁ’U’LLÁH,  #VII

IMG_0232EVENING:

Concerning obligatory prayer, it hath been revealed in such wise that whosoever reciteth it, even one time, with a detached heart, will find himself wholly severed from the world.

—His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting,

FROM THE WRITINGS OF BAHÁ’U’LLÁH,  #VIII

FROM THE CENTRE OF THE COVENANT ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ:

The Obligatory Prayers are binding inasmuch as they are conducive to humility and submissiveness, to setting one’s face towards God and expressing devotion to Him. Through such prayer man holdeth communion with God, seeketh to draw near unto Him, converseth with the true Beloved of his heart, and attaineth spiritual stations…

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…O thou spiritual friend! Thou hast asked about the wisdom of obligatory prayer. Know thou that such prayer is mandatory and binding. Man under no pretext whatsoever is excused from observing the prayer unless he is incapable of performing it or some great obstacle interveneth. The wisdom of obligatory prayer is this: That it causeth a connection between the servant and the True One, because at that time man with all his heart and soul turneth his face towards the Almighty, seeking His association and desiring His love and companionship. For a lover, there is no greater pleasure than to converse with his beloved, and for a seeker, there is no greater bounty than intimacy with the object of his desire. It is the greatest longing of every soul who is attracted to the Kingdom of God to find time to turn with entire devotion to his Beloved, so as to seek His bounty and blessing and immerse himself in the ocean of communion, entreaty and supplication. Moreover, obligatory prayer and fasting produce awareness and awakening in man, and are conducive to his protection and preservation from tests.

Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting,

FROM THE WRITINGS OF ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ,  #’s 6-7

5 March ― 5 ‘Alá’   Leave a comment

5 March ― 5 ‘Alá’

The Holy Period of the Fast

Day 5

MORNING:

Know thou that religion is as heaven; and fasting and obligatory prayer are its sun and its moon. We entreat God, exalted and glorified be He, to graciously aid everyone who acteth according to His will and good-pleasure.

—His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting,

FROM THE WRITINGS OF BAHÁ’U’LLÁH,  #V

EVENING:

Be not neglectful of obligatory prayer and fasting. He who faileth to observe them hath not been nor will ever be acceptable in the sight of God. Follow ye wisdom under all conditions. He, verily, hath bidden all to observe that which hath been and will be of profit to them. He, in truth, is the All-Sufficing, the Most High.

—His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting,

FROM THE WRITINGS OF BAHÁ’U’LLÁH,  #VI

FROM THE CENTRE OF THE COVENANT ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ:

The laws of God, such as fasting, obligatory prayer and the like, as well as His counsels regarding virtues, good deeds and proper conduct, must be carried out everywhere to the extent possible, unless some insurmountable obstacle or some great danger presents itself or it runneth counter to the dictates of wisdom. For indolence and laxity hinder the outpourings of love from the clouds of divine mercy, and people will thus remain deprived…

…O ye loved ones of God! Out of gratitude for firmness in the eternal Covenant arise to serve the threshold of the omnipotent Lord, observe obligatory prayer and fasting, and spend your time in diffusing the sweet savors of God and in spreading the Divine verses. Tear asunder the veils, remove the obstacles, proffer the life-giving waters, and point out the path of salvation. This is what ‘Abdu’l-Bahá admonisheth you every morn and eve.

Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting,

FROM THE WRITINGS OF ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ,  #’s 4-5

3 March ― 2 ‘Alá’   Leave a comment

3 March ― 3 ‘Alá’

The Holy Period of the Fast

Day 3

MORNING:

One who performeth neither good deeds nor acts of worship is like unto a tree which beareth no fruit, and an action which leaveth no trace. Whosoever experienceth the holy ecstasy of worship will refuse to barter such an act or any praise of God for all that existeth in the world. Fasting and obligatory prayer are as two wings to man’s life. Blessed be the one who soareth with their aid in the heaven of the love of God, the Lord of all worlds.

—His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting,

FROM THE WRITINGS OF BAHÁ’U’LLÁH,  #III

1.29

EVENING:

Cling firmly to obligatory prayer and fasting. Verily, the religion of God is like unto heaven; fasting is its sun, and obligatory prayer is its moon. In truth, they are the pillars of religion whereby the righteous are distinguished from those who transgress His commandments. We entreat God, exalted and glorified be He, that he may graciously enable all to observe that which He hath revealed in His Ancient Book.

—His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting,

FROM THE WRITINGS OF BAHÁ’U’LLÁH,  #IV

FROM THE CENTRE OF THE COVENANT ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ:

The laws of God regarding fasting and obligatory prayer are absolutely incumbent upon His servants. Therefore, they must turn their faces to the Point of Adoration of the celestial Concourse, hold fast to the most sublime Station, and pray and supplicate that they may be freed from the doubts of misinterpretation. This is the way of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. This is the religion of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. This is the path of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. Whoever cherisheth the love of Baha, let him choose this straight path. Whoever abandoneth this path, verily, he is of them who are shut out as by a veil from Him. Shouldst thou observe any soul who is in doubt about this commandment or who misinterpreteth it, but hath no secret motive or defiance in what he doeth, be friendly towards him, and with the utmost cordiality and through kind speech, endeavor to turn him from the path of such interpretation towards the plain meaning of the verses of God.

Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting,

FROM THE WRITINGS OF ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ,  #3

 

 

FROM THE BELOVED GUARDIAN OF THE FAITH SHOGHI EFFENDI:

Let us pray to God that in these days of world encircling gloom, when the dark forces of nature, of hate, rebellion, anarchy and reaction are threatening the very stability of human society, when the most precious fruits of civilization are undergoing severe and unparalleled tests, we may all realize, more profoundly than ever, that though but a mere handful amidst the seething masses of the world, are in this day the chosen instruments of God’s Grace, that our Mission is most urgent and vital to the fate of humanity and, fortified by these sentiments, arise to achieve God’s holy purpose for mankind.

 

Your brother in His service

 

Shoghi

 

Haifa, Palestine,

 

December 2, 1923

Letters from the Guardian to Australia and New Zealand, p. 2)

 

 

FROM HAND OF THE CAUSE OF GOD,

MR. ABU’L-QASIM FAIZI:

The words of Imams and divines of Islam served to draw the longing souls to the fountainhead of true knowledge. There is a very powerful prayer which the Shí’ah Muslims chant as a dawn prayer during the month of the fast. The faithful believer awakens at dawn to catch the melody of its tune as it is chanted from the minarets of mosques or, in these days, is broadcast from the radio stations. In introducing this prayer, Imam Fida has said, “I swear by God that the Greatest Name is found in this prayer. Had you known this, you would have fought with swords to possess this prayer.”* The opening words of this prayer read as follows: “O God! My God! I beseech Thee by Thy Bahá, Thy Bahá in its entirety. I beseech Thee by all Thy Bahá.” The prayer then goes on mentioning other Names of God including “Beauty”, “Splendor”, and all the Names which are a part of the Bahá’í calendar.

* Mafatihu’l Jenan, Keys of Paradise, compilation of Muslim Prayers

An Explanation of the Greatest Name, p. 5

1 March ― THE FEAST OF ‘Alá’   Leave a comment

1 March ― THE FEAST OF ‘Alá’

The Holy Period of the Fast

Day 1

 

MORNING:

This is, O my God, the first of the days on which Thou hast bidden Thy loved ones to observe the Fast. I ask of Thee by Thy Self and by him who hath fasted out of love for Thee and for Thy good-pleasure – and not out of self and desire, nor out of fear of Thy wrath – and by Thy most excellent names and august attributes, to purify Thy servants from the love of aught except Thee and to draw them nigh unto the Dawning-Place of the lights of Thy countenance and the Seat of the throne of Thy oneness. Illumine their hearts, O my God, with the light of Thy knowledge and brighten their faces with the rays of the Daystar that shineth from the horizon of Thy Will. Potent art Thou to do what pleaseth Thee. No God is there but Thee, the All-Glorious, Whose help is implored by all men.

Assist them, O my God, to render Thee victorious and to exalt Thy Word. Suffer them, then, to become as hands of Thy Cause amongst Thy servants, and make them to be revealers of Thy religion and Thy signs amongst mankind, in such wise that the whole world may be filled with Thy remembrance and praise and with Thy proofs and evidences. Thou art, verily, the All-Bounteous, the Most Exalted, the Powerful, the Mighty, and the Merciful.

—His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting,

PRAYERS BY BAHÁ’U’LLÁH FOR THE FAST,  #1

EVENING:

In the Name of Him Who hath been promised in the Books of God, the All-Knowing, the All-Informed! The days of fasting have arrived wherein those servants who circle round Thy throne and have attained Thy presence have fasted. Say: O God of names and creator of heaven and earth! I beg of Thee by Thy Name, the All-Glorious, to accept the fast of those who have fasted for love of Thee and for the sake of Thy good-pleasure and have carried out what Thou hast bidden them in Thy Books and Tablets. I beseech Thee by them to assist me in the promotion of Thy Cause and to make me steadfast in Thy love, that my footsteps may not slip on account of the clamour of Thy creatures. Verily, Thou art powerful over whatsoever Thou willest. No God is there but Thee, the Quickener, the All-Powerful, the Most Bountiful, the Ancient of Days.

—His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting,

PRAYERS BY BAHÁ’U’LLÁH FOR THE FAST,  #1

FROM THE CENTRE OF THE COVENANT  ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ:

Obligatory prayer and fasting are among the most great ordinances of this holy Dispensation…

 

…In the realm of worship, fasting and obligatory prayer constitute the two mightiest pillars of God’s holy Law. Neglecting them is in no wise permitted, and falling short in their performance is of a certainty not acceptable. In the Tablet of Visitation He saith: “I beseech God, by Thee and by them whose faces have been illumined with the splendours of the light of Thy countenance, and who, for love of Thee, have observed all whereunto they were bidden.” He declareth that observance of the commands of God deriveth from love for the beauty of the Best-Beloved. The seeker, when immersed in the ocean of the love of God, will be moved by intense longing and will arise to carry out the laws of God. Thus, it is impossible that a heart which containeth the fragrance of God’s love should yet fail to worship Him, except under conditions when such an action would agitate the enemies and stir up dissension and mischief. Otherwise, a lover of the Abhá Beauty will assuredly and continually demonstrate perseverance in the worship of the Lord.

Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting,

FROM THE WRITINGS OF ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ,  #1-2

3 January ― 4 Sharaf   Leave a comment

Blessed is he who, at the hour of dawn, centring

his thoughts on God, occupied with His remembrance,

and supplicating His forgiveness, directeth his steps to

the Mashriqu’l-Adhkár and, entering therein, seateth

himself in silence to listen to the verses of God, the

Sovereign, the Mighty, the All-Praised. Say: The

Mashriqu’l-Adhkár is each and every building which

hath been erected in cities and villages for the

celebration of My praise. Such is the name by which it

hath been designated before the throne of glory, were

ye of those who understand.

His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

The Kitáb-i-Aqdas,¶115 p. 60

IMG_0466MORNING:

They who recite the verses of the All-Merciful in

the most melodious of tones will perceive in them that

with which the sovereignty of earth and heaven can

never be compared. From them they will inhale the

divine fragrance of My worlds — worlds which today

none can discern save those who have been endowed

with vision through this sublime, this beauteous

Revelation. Say: These verses draw hearts that are pure

unto those spiritual worlds that can neither be

expressed in words nor intimated by allusion. Blessed

be those who hearken.

          His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

The Kitáb-i-Aqdas,¶116 p. 60

EVENING:

IMG_0466Assist ye, O My people, My chosen servants who

have arisen to make mention of Me among My creatures

and to exalt My Word throughout My realm. These,

truly, are the stars of the heaven of My loving

providence and the lamps of My guidance unto all

mankind. But he whose words conflict with that which

hath been sent down in My Holy Tablets is not of Me.

Beware lest ye follow any impious pretender. These

Tablets are embellished with the seal of Him Who

causeth the dawn to appear, Who lifteth up His voice

between the heavens and the earth. Lay hold on this

Sure Handle and on the Cord of My mighty and

unassailable Cause.

His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

The Kitáb-i-Aqdas,¶117 pp: 61-62

FROM THE CENTRE OF THE COVENANT

‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ:

IMG_5100O ye beloved of God! O ye children of His Kingdom! Verily, verily, the new heaven and the new earth are come. The holy City, new Jerusalem, hath come down from on high in the form of a maid of heaven, veiled, beauteous, and unique, and prepared for reunion with her lovers on earth. The angelic company of the Celestial Concourse hath joined in a call that hath run throughout the universe, all loudly and mightily acclaiming: ‘This is the City of God and His abode, wherein shall dwell the pure and holy among His servants. He shall live with them, for they are His people and He is their Lord.’

He hath wiped away their tears, kindled their light, rejoiced their hearts and enraptured their souls. Death shall no more overtake them neither shall sorrow, weeping or tribulation afflict them. The Lord God Omnipotent hath been enthroned in His Kingdom and hath made all things new. This is the truth and what truth can be greater than that announced by the Revelation of St. John the Divine? 

IMG_3228He is Alpha and Omega. He is the One that will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life and bestow upon the sick the remedy of true salvation. He whom such grace aideth is verily he that receiveth the most glorious heritage from the Prophets of God and His holy ones. The Lord will be his God, and he His dearly-beloved son.

Rejoice, then, O ye beloved of the Lord and His chosen ones, and ye the children of God and His people, raise your voices to laud and magnify the Lord, the Most High; for His light hath beamed forth, His signs have appeared and the billows of His rising ocean have scattered on every shore many a precious pearl.

Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, pp:12-13

25 August ―6 Asmá’   Leave a comment


MORNING:

I beg Thee to forgive me, O my Lord, for every mention but the mention of Thee, and for every praise but the praise of Thee, and for every delight but delight in Thy nearness, and for every pleasure but the pleasure of communion with Thee, and for every joy but the joy of Thy love and of Thy good-pleasure, and for all things pertaining unto me which bear no relationship unto Thee, O Thou Who art the Lord of lords, He Who provideth the means and unlocketh the doors.

His Holiness The Báb

Selections from the Writings of the Báb, p. 182

EVENING:

The reason why privacy hath been enjoined in moments of devotion is this, that thou mayest give thy best attention to the remembrance of God, that thy heart may at all times be animated with His Spirit, and not be shut out as by a veil from thy Best Beloved. Let not thy tongue pay lip service in praise of God while thy heart be not attuned to the exalted Summit of Glory, and the Focal Point of communion. Thus if haply thou dost live in the Day of Resurrection, the mirror of thy heart will be set towards Him Who is the Day-Star of Truth; and no sooner will His light shine forth than the splendour thereof shall forthwith be reflected in thy heart. For He is the Source of all goodness, and unto Him revert all things. But if He appeareth while thou hast turned unto thyself in meditation, this shall not profit thee, unless thou shalt mention His Name by words He hath revealed.

His Holiness The Báb

Selections from the Writings of the Báb, pp: 93-94